Decluttering during Lockdown: Medicines

This unexpected lockdown and down time has given me a lot of time to sort and declutter and re-organise various areas in my own home. One of these areas is the medicine cabinet. Although my medicines have already been organised in the past, it is always a good idea to check them every so often.

So here goes a step by step guide to organising your medication so that you can find them when you need them and so that you have the necessary medication for common ailments on hand.

Tips for decluttering your medicines:

  1. Declutter:
    Start by gathering all the medicines and medical supplies from all over the house to one area (a la Marie Kondo!) Look at the expiry date of each medicine and only keep those that have not expired and those that you could want to keep. Collect all the unwanted and expired ones into a bag. Remove them from packaging where possible. Remember that medicines should not be tossed into the garbage bin or down the toilet, rather they should be taken to your local pharmacy for safe disposal.

  2. Categorise and sort
    Divide the medicines, into categories according to the ailment for example:
    Colds and Flu
    Pain and antibiotics
    Stomach (diarrhoea, nausea, constipation, cramps, probiotics)
    Tranquilizers and sleeping tablets
    Skin/external medicine (eczema, fungal creams, calamine lotion, etc.)
    Bandages and first aid (plasters, scissors, antiseptic creams)

  3. Organise
    Find containers that you would like to use to store each of these categories. From personal experience, I know that some categories will always have more medicine than others. You may prefer then to use smaller containers for less popular categories. It is okay to combine categories, if you label the holding container clearly.

Choose containers that have a lid and preferably from the same range so that they stack together neatly. Label each container clearly with the category of medication it contains. Fill each container with the appropriate medicines. Store all the containers in one central, safe location where it is:
• Easily accessible to those who use it;
• Stored at the correct temperature; and
• Out of the reach of children

What I did to update and sort my medicines during lockdown:
1. Removed all the containers from the cabinet
2. Wiped down the shelves
3. Checked each container to see if:
• any medication was
• the medication was in the correct container
• the container and medicines needed to be wiped/cleaned

I kept a notepad with me to write down the name of any medication that had expired and that I felt was essential to replace.
Replaced the lid on each container after checking the label on each one.
Separated the medicines that I would be taking to the pharmacy for safe disposal.
Purchased the medicines that I had on my list and added them to the correct container.

Check the expiry date of each product

Toss expired medication in a bag for safe disposal

Store in a container by category

Keep a separate container with daily medicines and vitamins

Make a list of medicines tht need to be replaced
Share |

Giving Back

Cheshire Homes de-cluttering

As a way of giving back to the community, I teamed up with Fiona Heath from Simply Organised Solutions and Jamie-Lee Stotter from The Clutter Coach to de-clutter and archive the office for Cheshire Homes in Milnerton.

The office had a backlog of ten years of filing and admin. Our mandate was to create a working archive and set up systems for more efficient office management going forward. This involved:

  • Decluttering files
  • Separating current documents from those to be archived or recycled
  • Creating and populating an archive
  • Sourcing archiving materials courtesy Tidy files Cape Town.
  • Purging documents from filing system and creating a user friendly system going forward.

The process was completed over several sessions amounting to approximately 30 hours, and Cheshire Homes were delighted with the result!

Share |

One simple way to declutter your desk

Working at a disorganised, messy desk can negatively affect your work. Everything competes for your attention and the mess can make you feel flustered and add to your stress levels. If you haven’t got the time to do a thorough decluttering but do need to make a change FAST, there is one way that works really well and helps to make it easier when you do the big tidy up.

How does it work?

Quite simple. Clear your desk/drawers completely, and place everything into a box, which is accessible but not in the way or even in sight.
Have only the essentials on your desk - your laptop and phone, for instance.

Then, whenever you find that you need to use something (a stapler, pen, etc.,) go to the box and bring only that item. Find a suitable place for it (e.g. drawer, pen holder).

This way, by the time you get to sorting through the box, you already have a great idea of what you actually need and use and what is just taking up space.

Share |